5 Defining Moments in Italy's 2014 World Cup Campaign

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5 Defining Moments in Italy's 2014 World Cup Campaign
Antonio Calanni/Associated Press

Much like four years ago, Italy’s World Cup campaign ended in a humiliating exit, unable to secure progression from the group stage.

Despite Cesare Prandelli lifting the Azzurri from their South African slump and into the final of Euro 2012, he too suffered the ignominy of falling at the first hurdle.

As always, the post-mortem has been depressing. Wide-reaching analysis and opinion on the peninsula has seen the blame divided up among various parties.

The coach’s failures were discussed, while Mario Balotelli must also accept his share of criticism, with the striker’s poor form emblematic of the team's struggles.

Over the following pages are the five moments which best defined Italy’s showing at this summer’s tournament, one of the darkest ever days in Azzurri history. 

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